Dadamac Holacracy Lite

Holacracy is a way of structuring an evolving organisation and Dadamac is an evolving organisation (see Why Dadamac knows where it's going - but can't say where it begins or ends )

I'm calling the current Dadamac version "Holacracy Lite", because we haven't learned how to implement the full version properly yet. To date I'm the person in Dadamac who knows most about Holacracy - and I've only been on the one-day, introductory course. There is much more to be learned.

What I bring to Dadamac Holacracy Lite is my enthusiasm, the Holacracy Workshop Handbook that I brought back from the training, and whatever is online. I'm introducing Dadamac Holacracy Lite to everyone I bring into Dadamac now.

I've also got together with someone else who has practical Holacracy experience and wants to learn more about setting things up. We've made ourselves into a peer-to-peer (P2P) Holacracy learning group in typical Dadamac learning style (see Learning, doing and dancing in Dadamac ). We meet on Skype to try and figure out how to do things together the Holacracy way.

When Dadamac is larger and better resourced I hope the organisation will be able to afford ongoing coaching on using Holacracy, until we become competent.

The Holacracy Workshop Handbook says:

Distributed authority:

Holacracy is a distributed authority system - a set of "rules of the game" that bake empowerment into the core of the organization. Unlike conventional top-down or progressive bottom-up approaches, it integrates the benefits of both without relying on parental heroic leaders. Everyone becomes a leader of their roles and a follower of others', processing tensions with real authority and real responsibility, through dynamic governance and transparent operations.

For information online Holacracy - how it works is a good place to start. Update on Holacracy & Conscious Evolution in Organisations is useful. Purpose-Driven Organization explains that it is "a real-world-tested social technology for purposeful organization. It radically changes how an organization is structured, how decisions are made, and how power is distributed." it is "A governance system that allows each of us to have full voice for the purpose of the organisation."

The next training day in London is on Friday, 12 December 2014.

Dadamac Holacracy Lite says:

One of the main reasons  there are tensions in organisations is because there is a mismatch in expectations. This is even more likely to happen when volunteers are involved who are not able to know in advance how much time they can offer from one week to the next.

If someone is expecting someone else to be doing something and it's not happening, of course there will be a tension. In Dadamac Holacracy Lite people are supposed to notice tensions and flag them up as quickly as possible. 

If roles are clearly defined then it should be comparatively easy for everyone to see why "the expected something" is not happening.

Either "the expected something" is part of someone's role (but they aren't doing it) or it is a wrong expectation (and they are not actually expecting to do whatever it is). Getting that clear for a start is a great help.

Maybe, in fact, no-one is expected to do "the missing expected something"- in which case there is a missing role which needs to be defined and filled (individual people can take many roles).

If someone is really expected to do "the missing expected something", but is failing to, then it is important to find out why they aren't doing what is expected - so the reason can be addressed. Maybe someone else is failing to fulfill some earlier expectation.  Maybe someone has too many roles and some roles need to be re-assigned. Maybe the organisation is just being unrealistic in what it is asking of people and needs to look again at its purpose and priorities.

Proper Holacracy has neat procedures for addressing tensions. Dadamac Holacracy Lite hasn't learned the procedures well enough yet to implement them, but at least we can make a start with roles.

Roles should be named, each role should have a clear purpose and accountabilities (i.e.the expectations that the role should fill).

As new volunteers come to join our team I will encourage them to discuss carefully with me , or Nikki, what they want to be accountable for, and agree about checking back to see if that is working or not. i.e. if there are any tensions on either side. As time goes by, they can define new roles, and drop ones that don't seem to fit. At present there is so much to do (or leave undone) that any role someone would be willing to take is likely to be a benefit to Dadamac, as long as the person filling the role gives more help than hassle.

Time to try it.

So, it's time to try  Dadamac Holacracy Lite.

Learning-by-doing, here we go again.